As an member of Generation X, I’ve worked with and managed many Millennials. And there are times when knowing a little about each generation, has helped me to understand a colleague.
When generalizing about any group, it’s first necessary to recognize that not everybody in any particular group acts like everyone else. There is often just as much variation within in each group, as there is between groups.
However, because generations come of age and enter the workforce around the same time, members of each generation often share similar experiences. And these shared experiences often shape perceptions and work-style.
So first off, who is in each generation?
Baby Boomer: born 1943 to 1960
Gen-Xer: born 1961 to 1981
Millennial: born 1982-2002
To understand an Xer, the first thing to know, is that Xers, grew up in a largely hands-off culture. Every generation for the past century has grown up with less and less self-autonomy. For an interesting article describing change over four generations, check out: How children lost right roam.